Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am so excited to have Meg Macy here today for a visit!!
Escape with Meg Macy and Her Teddy Bears
One would think Meg Macy has loved teddy bears since childhood. Not so! She slept with Jerry the Mouse (of Tom and Jerry) every night. Her love of teddy bears was born as an adult, when Meg visited England. On a visit to Harrods’s, she picked up a Paddington Bear toy and read the tag – “Please look after this bear”. Paddy looked ready for a new adventure to the States, so she tucked him into her suitcase. From there, the bears began to multiply (like rabbits) until she had a houseful. While Meg’s daughter had fun playing with all the bears (and bunnies), she now serves as a beta reader for Mom’s ‘Shamelessly Adorable’ Teddy Bear cozy mysteries for Kensington.
Meg and her daughter often escape every year on a trip around Michigan. (Meg’s husband often tags along, too, depending on his schedule.) Mackinac Island is a favorite for overnight stays at various bed-and-breakfasts – check out the Haan and Metevier Inn websites. Meg and her family love walking along Main Street or renting bikes to ride around the island. The downtown souvenir shops are always fun, as are visiting the Butterfly House, seeing the Grand Hotel, watching the ferries come and go. Meg will even take a day trip to the island if they can’t spend the night. And she’s often found adorable teddy bears, artwork, and teacups in boutiques there for her collections.
Other favorite spots to escape are Ann Arbor’s Tea Haus, Sweet Afton’s tea room in Plymouth, Saugatuck’s Ida Red’s (for breakfast) and Pumpernickel’s (for lunch) plus the art galleries and unique shops. Meg loves Point Betsie and other lighthouse along the Lake Michigan coastline. All of these places serve as inspiration for her writing. She loves studying maps when she can’t escape the house.
For Silver Hollow, the setting of her new series, Meg took bits of one small town and blended in a few others in Southeastern Michigan. Pinterest is another escape – she loves to trawl for new photos to pin to her ‘Rare Teddy Bears’ board, along with what the Silver Bear Shop & Factory interior might look like.
Details, details – for Meg, that’s what makes any book fun to read!
One more escape – springtime means the Malice Domestic author and reader convention. Meg enjoys the author panels, meeting readers, and sharing stories about writing with other authors. Meg is also one-half of the D.E. Ireland team (along with Sharon Farrow) writing the Eliza Doolittle & Henry Higgins mysteries, and they have been thrilled to be a finalist (twice!) in the Best Historical category.
Meg is thrilled to see how readers enjoy Bearly Departed and will be hosting a book launch event at her local library on June 6th, plus signing books around the area through the summer. She also plans on attending Bouchercon in Toronto later this year – yet another escape, and out of the country to Canada! She recently found a maple leaf bear when visiting Agawa Canyon. And one day, Meg plans to return to England for a Palace Guard teddy bear to keep Paddy company back home in Michigan.
After all, “it’s nice having a bear about the house.” (Michael Bond, A Bear Called Paddington) The more, the merrier!
Thank you Meg for stopping by today!
The Silver Bear Shop and Factory might be the cutest place around, but there’s nothing warm and fuzzy about murder . . .
As manager of the family teddy bear shop and factory, thirty-one-year-old Sasha Silverman leads a charmed life. Well, except for the part about being a single divorcée with a ticking biological clock in small-town Silver Hollow. And that’s just kid’s stuff compared to Will Taylor, the sales rep who’s set on making drastic changes to the business her parents built from scratch—with or without Sasha’s approval . . .
But before Will digs his claws in, someone pulls the stuffing out of his plan . . . and leaves his dead body inside the factory. Reeling from shock, Sasha’s hit with more bad news—police suspect her hot-tempered Uncle Ross may have murdered him. Sasha knows her uncle would never do such a thing, and she’s launching her own little investigation to expose the truth. As she tracks Will’s biggest rivals and enemies for clues, Sasha can’t get too comfy—or she’ll become the next plaything for a killer . . .
Things at The Silver Bear Shop and Factory are not “beary” delightful. After the sales manager Will Taylor announces manufacturing of the teddies will be moving overseas the staff is in uproar. Especially Sasha, Maddie and their Uncle Ross. The girl’s parents started this business and have basically retired and have left the shop and factory in their hands. Their parents/brother never would do something so major without talking to them first.
Before they can even contact their father Sasha and Maddie find Will’s dead body next to the stuffing machine. To make matters worse the police have pegged Uncle Ross as the prime suspect. Seems his threats to Will were taken seriously by some people. The factory and store are shut down, the upcoming teddy bear parade may have to be cancelled, her uncle may soon be behind bars and her parents are not returning their calls. Sasha just can’t bear any more drama so she starts investigating on her own not realizing she may be the next “bearly departed”.
This was a fabulous read.
The Silver Bear Shop and Factory sounds like such a fun place. I know there is a national chain that allows you to stuff you own teddies and other creatures but The Silver Bear Shops sells a very unique bear. Also Maddie and Sasha make a great team, creative to think of all sorts of events to coordinate with the seasons and holidays drawing visitors to Silver Hollow.
Macy has created a charming cast of characters. Sasha is divorced but her ex has moved back to Silver Hollow bringing a bit of added drama. She is a very determined woman and very loyal to her family and their business. Maddie takes care of the office work, paying bills, working with vendors, and the financial reports. She also has a very creative side. Uncle Ross runs the factory and can be a little prickly but like his brother, the girl’s father, he is a real teddy bear behind all the bluster. Their mother is a little tougher and ready for life to slow down. We also meet their employees and other shopkeepers like Will’s wife. Being the first book in the series the author has left plenty of room for the characters grown in future installments.
The author has written a tale with a number of twists. The clue that seemed to be missed by the police was one I grabbed onto and was pleasantly surprised that I was right about its relevance. I was still surprised by the way the story played out.
Meg Macy has penned a wonderful debut for this series. It checks all my boxes for an absolutely perfect escape. I can “bearly” wait for my next visit to Silver Hollow. Bear Witness to Murder will be released in 2018.
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent
About the Author
Award-winning mystery author Meg Macy lives in Southeast Michigan, close to Ann Arbor, Chelsea, and Dexter — the area she chose for the setting of her new “Shamelessly Adorable Teddy Bear” cozy mystery series for Kensington. She is also one-half of the writing team of D.E. Ireland for the Eliza Doolittle & Henry Higgins Mystery series; two books have been named Agatha Award finalists. Meg’s first published book, Double Crossing, won the 2012 Best First Novel Spur Award from Western Writers of America. She’s a graduate of Seton Hill University’s Writing Popular Fiction program. Meg loves reading mysteries, historicals, and other genre fiction, and also enjoys gardening, crafts, and watercolor painting.
Author Links: www.megmacy.com Meg Macy – Teddy Bear Cozy Mysteries Meg Macy on Twitter
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